Who Is Your Professional Role Model?

Who Is Your Professional Role Model?

by Lee Boyland In the spring of 2010, I had the pleasure of attending my sister-in-law’s graduation from Ball State University (my alma mater as well)! It was a chilly day in May, and while I braced the unusually cold weather, I really took in the commencement speech that Angela Ahrendts, then CEO of Burberry and fellow alum, presented. I was intrigued and inspired by her story, her upbringing and the fabulous career she has worked so hard to achieve. A few years have passed since attending her commencement speech, and my most recent issue of Ball State Alumnus arrived in my mailbox last week, featuring none other than Angela Ahrendts on the cover! This issue featured a few pieces about Angela, one written by her, and I recognized that I think I’ve found my professional role model. I realized there are several things we have in common that form my admiration of her:

  • We both call central Indiana Home – check!
  • We both are working mothers and wives – check!
  • We share similar Christian beliefs and upbringings – check!
  •  We both are Ball State graduates – chirp chirp!

While I am far from becoming a CEO of a company as large and successful from Burberry, or Apple – her most recent employer, I have much to look up to and aspire to be. So, the next time I am asked who I identify with as a role model, I have my answer  . Who have you recognized as a professional role model? Have your role models changed during your career? You can go here to read Angela’s commencement speech.

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